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Knowledge Zenith (KZ) impressions thread

  1. DocHoliday

    My ZSR hasn't arrived yet. That red ZSR pic is a KZ image. When they do come in I'll post a pic of them side by side.

    I am listening to the ZS5(i) and TRN right now, back to back. They sound quite different. I can understand them getting "not very positive impressions" because TRN tuned them slightly awkwardly. It appears that TRN focused more on science when tuning these. They focused on decreasing the ear's most sensitive frequency range (2khz -6khz) in the Fletcher-Munson Curve. It's a bit awkward because there is a sharp drop in the upper midrange, but then it attempts to resume things 2-3khz up the line. This causes the lower treble to sound unnatural and causes the midrange to sound distant. Like the ZS5(i), it's not my favorite sound signature, mainly due to sound signature preferences, but I do like it's warm presentation. Whenever I'm in the mood for a warm sound signature I'm not drawn to one over the other. To me they're about equal though they don't sound the same.

    My EQ for the TRN V10: Screenshot_2018-01-31-20-19-39.png

    BTW, like you, I hear no sibilance or harsh highs with my ZS5(i). Mine is very smooth. Very smooth with zero fatigue during very long listening sessions.

    Fletcher-Munson Curve: https://ehomerecordingstudio.com/fletcher-munson-curve/
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
    riffrafff, barocka and CoiL like this.
  2. CoiL
    Thanks. I also read out of reviews, that they have dip somewhere in higher-mids. my most sensitive area is about 6.2-7.5kHz btw.
    ZS5v1 has small dip around 4.3kHz as much I have looked at graphs but I don`t hear anything lacking or missing with my gear pairing.
    Waiting for Your comparison pics.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
    DocHoliday likes this.
  3. oyobass
    Agreed, unless foams are the only way to get a decent seal. Then they will increase bass substantially.
  4. svil3
    This, indeed.
    oyobass likes this.
  5. Strat Rider
    With the cable talk that's been going around, brings a question, not about the iem plugs, but the cable pins.
    Background, I mistakenly bought the silver cable with the white rings on the plug, and without any marking for L/R on the cable pin housings or manufacturer on the strain relief or anywhere else:rage:. Before I plug them into my ZS6, If I test them with a DMM, which position on the plug is left/right? Secondly, since the cables and ear pieces are keyed, how can I insure the cables are correct regarding the rounded vs squared off end and polarity.?
    Any assistance is greatly appreciated.:triportsad:
  6. nkramer
  7. DocHoliday

    I have to tell you, K, upon going over your impressions one more time I came away with the melancholy feeling that I should have purchased more than one ZS5(i) when I made my purchase. It's actually odd that I didn't order a back-up pair when I put my order through. I learned early on to buy at least two KZ's instead of one for at least two reasons.

    1) Replacing a pair could lead to a lengthy wait (slow boat from China).

    2) KZ has a tendency to silently alter the sound in their best selling IEMs (ATE, ZS1, ZS3, ZS5, and ZS6), so if I want a backup of the original I best order it when it's available. The only time this wasn't the best decision was with the ED12, but I only spent $24 total on them, so....

    I am hoping that KZ actually has retuned the ZS5(iii), but only time will tell. It's all speculation at this point, but I'll order another ZS5 in a few weeks just to be sure. Truth is even if they retuned a ZS5(iii) it won't sound the same as a ZS5(i) due to the use of a crossover this time.

    This review/impression in particular has me revisiting what a gem the ZS5(i) is, particularly at it's sub-$40 price tag.

    .....but hey, if a ZS5(iii) exists, maybe it will be more refined than the original ZS5(i).

    Maybe not...

    Tic toc tic toc.......
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
    trumpethead and riffrafff like this.
  8. Slater
    The approach you describe is always what I try and stick to as well.

    I usually buy the "backup" set when Gearbest rolls out the big coupon discounts (which can happen a few months later). That's how I got the ZS6 for $19.99, ZS5 for $12.99, EDR2 for $2.99, etc.

    Having a backup pair is great for modding as well, so you can have a stock set to A/B.

    It can bite you in the rear if a new IEM has a defect and is recalled or corrected. Then you get stuck with not 1 but 2 turds. Luckily, that doesn't happen that often.
    DocHoliday likes this.
  9. Willber
    Apologies if you have covered this, but have you tried the UiiSii CM5? I don't have the ZS5 (either one) but I find the CM5 to be more spacious and natural than the ZS6, with smoother highs without losing any detail. They are very cheap at the moment:


    Also, some people on here found a code that reduces them to $8.99. That's a steal!
  10. DocHoliday

    Thanks for the heads-up. I was just preparing an Amazon order. I think I'll include the UiiSii CM5 as well if I can get one w/o a microphone. Unfortunately, they've sold out of the UiiSii Hi-805 that were $5.99 for a while instead of the $30 everyone else was asking.

  11. Willber
    I don't think they do one without a mic, but it is pretty small and light - I don't use it but neither do I notice it. If you need further endorsement of the CM5, ask @Slater, I think it was his recommendation that got me onto them.
    DocHoliday likes this.
  12. Slater
    Yup, CM5 is 5/5 in my book. It has firmly reinforced my belief in the relevance of single dynamic driver IEMs in the vast sea of the "more BAs must be better" hybrid IEM market that we have nowadays.

    But then again, hybrids sell. Look at KZ - everything they are making in 2018 is hybrid. Yet the CM5 proves that a single dynamic can still kick arse.

    As far as the 805, you didn't really miss anything Doc. I didn't care for it and sent it back. If I had to get one UiiSii, it would be the CM5 (granted, I haven't heard nearly as many UiiSiis as @Vidal though).

    But for the price it's a no-brainer. $11.99 right now, and the criminally-low $8.99 price it was on sale for just a few weeks ago. Let's just say I'm glad I have 2 pairs for when 1 dies :)
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018
    djmakemynight, DocHoliday and Willber like this.
  13. Willber
    I agree 100% with all that.
    Slater likes this.
  14. Strat Rider
    nkramer likes this.
  15. rayliam80
    So after lurking for months on this thread, I just want to say thanks to all the regulars here. Since November, I've purchase the ZS6, ZST Pro, ZS3 and the ATE as well as the UiiSii CM5 recommended by Slater. I also saved a bit by resisting "upgrade" cables because of the fluctuations in resistance amongst all the cables as well as the green oxidation issue.

    Any ideas about these or something similiar? https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Fre...th-Or-Without-Mic-IEM-cables/32786849092.html

    I like the fact that these cables are listed in aliexpress under home > all categories > beauty & health > tools & accessories > toiletry kits :poop:


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